The Book Club Blog

Books for any occasion and other life stuff

Books, Bookstagram and Bookswaps

I have been a bad blogger.

January was my last post. In two and a half months that would be a year since I last posted. Does that mean I haven’t been reading? Definitely not. I have read many books. Some were great, some blah, two handfuls were excellent but most of the books I have read this year, have been a three star read. Saying that, my mind has been terribly distracted, so maybe its not them, it’s me;-) I’ll document my excellent book list at the end of this post. You can let me know if you agree, or not.

I may not have been blogging, but I have been more active on Instagram, or more precisely, Bookstagram. Not heard of it? It’s the place to go for photographs of elegantly placed books, cats,  books and cats, cats and books, books and more books. It’s a fun place to be, you meet bookish peeps, exchange bookish information,  discover fandoms you’re not really interested in,  find local stationery suppliers, and sometimes, you even get to talk books to those who chat on insta. It happens…;-) But the best thing I discovered this year was the SA Bookswap.

What a fabulous start up by Tams from @Bibliobookwolf. Tams initiated conversation with me via Booksta inviting me to join the South African Book Swap. Which is exactly that.  Swapping books. With a stranger. Or someone you have only stalked on insta. Or, someone you actually know on insta. There is always a theme. Partners discuss the budget amongst themselves. There is always an unboxing date to ensure suitable levels of excitement, (of which there is much). Countdowns, Giveaways, Discounts from various accounts. It’s all types of fun. So much so, I am putting together a box for a fellow bookstagrammers daughter, from my daughter – an avid reader and the live unboxer for me on social media.  I am currently participating in my third one, unboxing day 13th December. If you want to find me there here is my handle @thebookclubblog101. 

I did however discover a Secret Santa Bookswap (*squeal*) via The Secret Book Cub on facebook (just this morning), which I promptly signed up for. Yes, I have a problem. I love sending books via mail, and I adore recieving books in the mail. You could say I am slightly addicted to book swaps… you wouldn’t be wrong.

So, bookswaps aside, scroll for my five star reads of 2019 and just below that, my daughter’s list of must reads.

 My five star faves of 2019 so far:

Educated – Tara Westover

On writing – Steven King

Death on the Limpopo – Sally Andrew

Us against You – Fredrik Backman

Plus one – Vanessa Raphaely

The Enumerations – Marie Fisher

Ready Player One – Ernest Cline

Heartless – Marissa Meyer

Lab Girl – Hope Jahren

My daughter’s five star reads:

Harry Potter  – All of them – JK Rowling

Heroes of Olympus, Magnus Chase and Percy Jackson – Rick Riordan

A Place called Perfect and  The Trouble with Perfect – Helena Duggan

Holes – Louis Sachar

The Magic Misfits – Neil Patrick Harris

What were your top faves this year?





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Secret Santa arrived!

I participated in the Secret Santa Book Swap hosted by The Broke and The Bookish last year and my gift arrived all the way from Germany at the end of January.

I know it is a bit late to be posting this but I wanted to share my gift and say thank you! It was a lovely bookish gift and I was quite spoilt, which I have to say, I really never mind…

The Book Lovers Journal. I love this! It has pages for all the fabulous books I read, and pages for what I would like to read!

 One of our Thursdays is missing – Jasper Fforde and The 100 Foot Journey – Richard C Morais ( which sounds like a fabulous read!)

And two delicious chocolate bars.

Thank you so much to my Secret Santa – Marny from it was a lovely surprise!

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My gift from my Secret Santa arrived!

I received my Secret Santa gift this morning!

So very excited, I had to hold back on opening my gift until I arrived home from the post office and as I had a guest waiting for me on my arrival, I then had to prolong it even more for after I had made coffee and got the biscuits out.

But, then I did, and this is what I received…

The Last Dragonslayer by Jasper Fforde.

He is one of my favourite authors and this is his latest book which has just recently been published. His writing is humorous and I love his books.

So, thank you so much Ana from thingsmeanalot, you have made my day!

(expect a review soon as I will be getting stuck into it asap!)

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Secret Santa and other book gifts


This is the first time that I have taken part in a holiday swop and it was great! I really enjoyed shopping as a Secret Santa (though the impatience of waiting for my gift to arrive at its destination was a bit much to handle…) and was very excited to see what my Secret Santa would send me, someone I had never met, in a completely different part of the world.

The wait was long, as long as the wait to Christmas in fact, but I arrived home from my holiday of festivities to find a parcel waiting for me. It had arrived from Santa Barbara (and all I really know of Santa Barbara is that it was the name of one of my favourite soapies when I was a teenager) from a blogger called Helen at Helen’s Book Blog.

I received a lovely recipe book called ‘A Slice of Santa Barbara’ California Riviera Cuisine  with a post card of Santa Barbara itself and a lovely pile of children’s book to send to Bambelela. So, that means a pressie for me and pressies for the little ones. How blessed am I?



Thank you Helen, it was a lovely surprise!

(And keep an eye out for a post on the results on the Book Rasier- coming soon, just waiting on some photies- we did good! Check out these photos of the books we raised.)



As for other bookish gifts, I received the book I was hoping for in my stocking: The Angels Game – Carlos Ruiz Zafon


and this delicious looking book called ‘Bake’ (which I have already tried out- or should I say, about to, as have just made one of the tarts for a late lunch, it looks and smells as good as the book cover!)


So, go on, spill the beans, what books did you receive this year?